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Friday, November 15, 2013


by George Held

            For Shereen Tan

There you are on Facebook,
hiking the Valois with your darling
Tootsie on her leash:
the brown grass is dry and it’s fall
and the scenic mountain
on the horizon has only a cap
of snow and it’s fall all over
the northern latitudes

while in Tacloban a vomitous
stench chokes the typhoon
survivors as they drag their starving
thirst-clenched bodies
and strangled souls past bloated
corpses toward the supply copters
landing another mile ahead, toward
the endless lines at the aeroport,

toward the makeshift morgues,
praying for relief, for escape,  
for the chance to identify
Maricel’s or Mama’s body,
all untethered by fate,
while harried tourists rush
to change their destination
From Manila to Geneva.

An occasional contributor to The New Verse News, George Held occasionally blogs at